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Greetings, kwm2fool, and welcome.

<<We rolled over our retirement settlements (lump sum) to one of the major brokerage houses. Three years ago we were seeing really good returns on the account. In the last year the return is down to virtually 0. We want to roll over the account to a brokerage that will let us self direct our investments. We are in our early 50's but at the current rate of growth we'll never make our retirement goals. Any help will be appreciated.>>

The broker of your choice can help you do a direct transfer of that (or those) IRA to a self-directed IRA so you incur no taxes or penalties. Just contact that agency, tell them what you want to do, and they will send you the necessary forms to get it accomplished.

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